Your phone is always at your fingertips or within your arm’s reach. It is the most accessible tool to prepare for hurricane season or any emergency you might face. When was the last time you left home without it?
Regardless of your phone preference, iPhone or Android, your phone has a place to take notes and the ability to create folders to store important documents and photos that you may need to access quickly. You can also password-protect your notes on both operating systems. Learn how to do it here:
What should you store on your phone and have readily available?
- Driver’s license or ID, front and back
- Medical/Dental Insurance Cards
- Social Security Card
- A photo of your license plate and VIN
- The Declarations Page from your Homeowners and Auto Insurance Policy (this should have your policy number)
- Recent exterior pictures of your house from the North, South, East, and West angles
- A video of the interior of your home, along with an inventory of the items in your home
- Receipts for any high price or specialty items
- If you have pets, copies of their vaccination and veterinary records
Set your phone up with the apps you need to keep up with the weather and local emergency information. Apps we suggest downloading for either iOS or Android:
- American Red Cross Hurricane App
- MyRadar Weather App
- National Hurricane Center Data App
- Local Emergency Management App for your region
- Scanner Radio App
Cell networks may be overloaded or down during a large-scale emergency, and WIFI may not work—plan for that. Store all critical contacts on your phone, so you don’t have to get online to find them, including utility companies, roadside assistance, etc. In addition, have your ICE (In Case of Emergency) contacts set up on your phone.
You may need to evacuate. Before this happens, have a map of your area, and your destination downloaded onto your mobile device. You can find directions on doing this here.
If you have other family members or friends, you will need to keep in contact with set up a group text ahead of time. Very often, when cell service is limited, texting will still work. Using text or social media to keep in touch will help keep phone lines open for first responders.
None of this matters if your phone is dead. Keep your battery charged while you can. Invest in a backup charger with multiple USB ports and keep it charged. Conserve power on your phone by turning off background app refresh and use WIFI whenever possible. Avoid phone calls, especially video calls; texting uses much less of your critical battery supply. In a pinch, use your car battery or your laptop to charge your phone if available and safe to do so. Check out other valuable tips for keeping your phone charged here.
Your cell phone or mobile device could be one of the most valuable tools in your hurricane prep kit. Please take a few minutes today to get it set up to work for you.
Coastal Claims Services works for the insured, not the insurance company, and offers residential and commercial services in multiple states. We serve as licensed property loss specialists and can help you get the best results from your claim. Our professional public adjusters will be by your side throughout every step of the claims process.
This blog is not intended to be professional advice, and all services are not available in every state. We follow all state guidelines. Contact Coastal Claims for more information on our services: 1-844-2File-Now.